By Capt. Bill Nordlund 1st Battalion, 3rd U.S. Infantry Regiment (The Old Guard)April 18, 2011
For the first time, Old Guard Soldiers will have the opportunity to conduct realistic tactical training in an urban environment on Joint Base Myer-Henderson Hall.
The Old Guard is scheduled to open an Ultimate Training Munitions non-lethal training range on the third floor in the D Wing of the Rader Annex (Bldg. 406) in mid-April.
Prior to the opening of the UTM Range, Old Guard Soldiers had to make the one and a half hour drive each way to Fort A.P. Hill, Va., in order to conduct this type of tactical training.
UTM rounds are non-lethal munitions that fire a wax projectile from the M4/M16 Assault Rifle and M249 squad automatic weapon as means to provide realistic tactical training for military and law enforcement.
The range will give Soldiers the opportunity to conduct battle drills on room clearing and build muscle memory and shooting mastery with close-quarters marksmanship in an easily accessible range on Joint Base Myer-Henderson Hall.
''With the many responsibilities The Old Guard has in Arlington National Cemetery and the National Capital Region, tactical training is often canceled because we do not have time to make the trek down to A.P. Hill," said Command Sgt. Maj. William Wilder, 1st Battalion command sergeant major.
''This will give our Soldiers an immediately accessible range on Joint Base Myer-Henderson Hall where they can conduct tactical training more frequently."
In addition to their memorial affairs and ceremonial skills, Soldiers in The Old Guard are expected to maintain their tactical proficiency as Infantrymen and this non-lethal shoot house will provide them more opportunities to train in their core military occupational specialty skill set.
Please note that personnel operating in Bldg. 406 should be respectful and adhere to the signs controlling the entrance of the third floor, D wing, as the doors will be closed and signs posted stating when the UTM range is being operated.
This is to ensure no personnel enter without proper Personnel Protective Equipment (PPE).
Although non-lethal, a UTM round can cause injury if you are not in the proper PPE.
Additionally, UTM rounds make minimal noise so those working in the building will not be disturbed.